The French Academy, the historic protector of the French language, cautioned against promoting “franglais” by the nation’s public bodies, claiming it presents real danger.
L’Academie Francaise said that it was “seriously concerned” at the mixing of French with English words — an increasingly common phenomenon in an era of social media and globalised marketing.
In France as elsewhere, phrases such as “fake news,” “happy hour” or “Black Friday” were widely adopted.
The academy said “repeated violations” of the 1994 Toubon law, which sets out rules and requirements for the use of French, “distort our language” not only because of the “invasion of the Anglo-Saxon terms,” but also because of the syntax damage.
It did not identify any offending state officials, but said it “solemnly warns public authorities and invites them to respect the law itself first and foremost.”
“If they do not react vigorously, if the public does not appreciate the danger that threatens it, French will cease to be the living and popular language we love,” the academy added.
The Toubon law also prohibited the use of foreign languages in all television broadcasts, requiring dubbing of all foreign-language programs. It also dictates that radio stations have at least 40% of the time to play French songs.
In August, French culture minister Franck Riester spoke out about the encroachment of other languages in France, by telling his Twitter followers to “say things in French.”


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